Road trips can be an excellent way to spend time with people while traveling to incredible destinations across the United States. Anytime you’re stuck in the car for a significant amount of time can mean either wiling away the time on your electronic devices or interacting through various interactive games that get everyone involved in the fun. The Crème de la Crème staff would like to share a few of our favorite games to play in the car with kids.
This classic game has a designated individual who finds something to spy on with the person’s little eye, making the others guess what it could be. Be sure to use objects that individuals can find along the road to allow enough time for other passengers to guess. Many people prefer to state that the items used cannot be within the vehicle. You could spy something green if you’re traveling past many leafy trees or something orange following a semi-truck with an orange trailer. The possibilities are endless.
Once someone guesses your item, it’s the individual’s turn to spy something and get the rest of the occupants to guess. “I Spy” is something children of all ages can participate in on the next family road trip.
The Alphabet Game
Anyone who knows the alphabet can participate in the Alphabet Game on the road. In this game, you’re searching for the letters of the alphabet from A to Z. Letters can be found on license plates, billboards, business signs, traffic signs, and the sides of semi-trailers. Everyone starts at A, and when you find a letter, you must state the letter and where you found it, such as, “First A on the Walmart sign.”
Once a letter has been used by one occupant, it’s not available for any other player to call out. You’ll quickly discover the scramble to find a J, Q, or Z on the road. Watch for businesses such as Jiffy Lube, Qdoba, and Pizza Hut to help you with these more challenging letters. The first person to go from A to Z, successfully matching each letter to a sign or license plate, wins.
Road Trip Bingo
Before you leave on your road trip, start with a list of things you can expect to see along the way and create a Road Trip Bingo card for everyone. You can also use preprinted generic Bingo cards if you don’t have time to create your own. Bingo spots can include roadkill, a rest stop, a convertible, a doughnut shop, a windmill, and more. Everyone’s cards have the items in a different arrangement, and you can even make it so that not everyone has the same things on each card to make filling the Bingo card more challenging. Once you see an item on your road trip, cross it off or mark it somehow until you get a Bingo.
You can play a variety of ways, such as Four Corners, where you need to get all four corners covered, or Blackout, which covers the entire Bingo board. You can also play for horizontal, diagonal, or vertical, as well as an X or a cross. Keep it interesting by offering small prizes to those who earn Bingo, such as a candy treat or the option to pick where you stop for lunch.
The License Plate Game
On the road, you’re likely to see out-of-state vehicles. You can use these license plates to play the License Plate Game. Before you head out on your trip, you can print a copy of a map showing all of the states in the United States for you to color in and mark the state license plates you see on your road trip. You can make the game more challenging by not allowing more than one passenger to use the same license plate or making each passenger write down the complete license plate number for it to count.
The License Plate Game is another game that lends nicely to awarding small gifts, such as where to stop for snacks next or a small treat bag. You can either play until you reach a certain number of license plates or until a specified amount of time has passed. You’ll unlikely find all 50 state license plates on a single road trip, making it difficult to require an entire board to win.
Name the Artist
If you have a group that’s into music, you can play Name the Artist on your next adventure. All you need is a radio and a headful of musician names. When a song starts, the first person to share the correct artist’s name gets the point. This activity is another game you can play to a specified point value or for a predetermined time. You can have each first guess be worth five points, a second guess worth three points, and a third guess worth one point, if correct, to make the game more interesting.
Similar to Bingo, except you’re trying to gather as many points as possible instead of creating a design on your board, a road trip Scavenger Hunt can provide hours of entertainment. You’ll want to devise a list of items you may see ahead of time and give each player a Scavenger Hunt checklist. Generic Scavenger Hunt lists are also available to download and play if desired. Once you see an item on your list, cross it off to earn points.
Items on a Scavenger Hunt could include a farm tractor, a car dealership, an American flag, a Volkswagen Beetle (or another iconic vehicle), a blue truck, or a specific fast-food place, such as McDonald’s. You can award prizes to the passenger with the most marked items at the end of the game.
These games to play in the car with kids, and more, will help keep everyone off the electronics and allow them to interact with other passengers to pass the time. The Crème de la Crème team invites you to try one or all of these games on your next family road trip or a trip to the grocery store to enjoy spending more time with your family and make your time on the road even more memorable.